Forums: Skydiving: Incidents:
BASE related fatality - Exposure after jump - Twin Falls, Idaho, USA, 6 Feb 2008

 

First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All

cJilljump  (B License)

Feb 8, 2008, 12:19 PM
Post #1 of 32 (4595 views)
Shortcut
BASE related fatality - Exposure after jump - Twin Falls, Idaho, USA, 6 Feb 2008 Can't Post

Richard Heaton, a skydiver from The Farm, was last spoken to on Wednesday night. He was calling from Twin Falls, Idaho - about to make a base jump from Perrine Bridge. His phone hasn't made any out-going calls since wed night. There is a search & rescue, including divers, looking for him since about noon EST. Any info about his whereabouts should go directly to the police department in Twin Falls.


edit for thread title ~TA


(This post was edited by TomAiello on Feb 10, 2008, 11:20 AM)


shermanator  (B License)

Feb 8, 2008, 1:42 PM
Post #2 of 32 (4522 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

that is not good. I hope he is heard from, and everything is alright. Did he go to the bridge alone?Frown


Andy_Copland  (A 105852)

Feb 8, 2008, 2:39 PM
Post #3 of 32 (4469 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Im tired of this shit, so tired.


Hans  (D 16658)

Feb 8, 2008, 3:51 PM
Post #4 of 32 (4417 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

I just heard they found his bodyFrown


Para_Frog  (D 29814)

Feb 8, 2008, 4:07 PM
Post #5 of 32 (4391 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Hans] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

~~~


cJilljump  (B License)

Feb 8, 2008, 4:15 PM
Post #6 of 32 (4377 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Para_Frog] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

I've been instructed by the investigators that his body was found, face down, in the cannon. His jump was successful, but apparently the climb out is difficult. He must have gotten lost, or couldn't climb up, and most likely died of hyperthermia. The coroner will contact me with exact details, but asked me to give info regarding any tattoos or scares that would identify the body found.


Andy_Copland  (A 105852)

Feb 8, 2008, 4:19 PM
Post #7 of 32 (4363 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Thats another good one lost. BSBD.


Para_Frog  (D 29814)

Feb 8, 2008, 4:23 PM
Post #8 of 32 (4352 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Goddamn it. If that's true - Please folks...it's a BASE rule...call the locals.

Any one of them will come climb out with you. Myself included, and I'm 2 hours away.


grannyinthesky  (D 30311)

Feb 8, 2008, 5:07 PM
Post #9 of 32 (4317 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Para_Frog] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
Goddamn it. If that's true - Please folks...it's a BASE rule...call the locals.

Any one of them will come climb out with you. Myself included, and I'm 2 hours away.

I'm three hours away, but I'd be there if anyone needed me, too.


ltdiver  (D 20506)

Feb 8, 2008, 5:34 PM
Post #10 of 32 (4283 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Para_Frog] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Goddamn it. If that's true - Please folks...it's a BASE rule...call the locals.

Any one of them will come climb out with you. Myself included, and I'm 2 hours away.

So sorry to hear about your loss. Frown Hypothermia is a likely scenario, looking at Weather and Winds in Twin Falls last night. Unimpressed

Sigh...

ltdiver


Premier TomAiello  (D 22400)
Moderator
Feb 8, 2008, 5:37 PM
Post #11 of 32 (4273 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

I've just come back from identifying the body with Stitch.

This was basically a death by exposure.

Richard was making his 3rd BASE jump, and his first at this site. He had been travelling all day, and arrived in the evening, after dark. He jumped sometime after 11:17pm on the night of Wednesday, February 6th. Conditions were good early in the evening, although that night we got several inches of snow and had high winds. It's not clear what the jumping conditions were at the time of the jump, but that doesn't appear to be an issue, because he probably landed without incident.

Temperatures were below freezing that night, and Richard was wearing jeans, sneakers and a relatively normal jacket. His new jumping boots were found in his hotel room, in a bag. His stash bag was also left in his hotel room, likely by accident. No flashlight was found, nor was any survival gear found. His telephone still has not been located (although the phone records were pulled by the Sheriff's office, which is how we know he made his last call to a friend at 11:17pm).

Never having jumped this site, it is unlikely that Richard knew the trail to climb out. He apparently began hiking up the canyon wall well away from the normal exit trail, and became lost. He then likely became progressively disoriented, confused and hypothermic. He was found without his rig, coat, shirt and one shoe, all of which he had apparently removed and discarded at different points. It is likely that he wandered in the canyon for several hours before succumbing to the elements. His body was recovered in the mid afternoon today (Friday the 8th). At least one other jumper had made two jumps today without noticing any sign of him.

The lessons here are clear. Bring a jumping partner, or at the very least a good method of communication to summon help. Know the trail out of your intended landing area. Be dressed appropriately for the weather conditions, and carry lights and survival gear as appropriate for the conditions. Check the weather forecast, and be prepared for any incoming weather, even if you plan to be back inside before it arrives.


Gene03

Feb 8, 2008, 6:12 PM
Post #12 of 32 (4222 views)
Shortcut
Re: [TomAiello] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

So sad and so needless. Do your homework folks.

Disclaimer: not an active jumper, just a rigger.


bigway

Feb 8, 2008, 6:55 PM
Post #13 of 32 (4186 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Gene03] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
So sad and so needless. Do your homework folks.

Disclaimer: not an active jumper, just a rigger.


Very sad, Sounds like a terrible scenario. It really makes me wonder what is going through someones head when they would go and do something like this on their own when it is only their third base jump and also when they do not know the place... Saying that though, I did not knw the person so i can not presume what he was like, Maybe he was the sort of guy that did things on his own, or maybe he was just lonely. Either way it is very sad to read about this.


Disclaimer: I have not jumped in a year but i do run a very busy online skydivng gear store.


grannyinthesky  (D 30311)

Feb 8, 2008, 7:05 PM
Post #14 of 32 (4169 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm terrible sorry to hear about this.
Here's a link to what is on one of the local tv stations. http://www.ktvb.com/...jumper.a209dd60.html


(This post was edited by grannyinthesky on Feb 8, 2008, 7:07 PM)


jtval  (D 26340)

Feb 8, 2008, 7:34 PM
Post #15 of 32 (4124 views)
Shortcut
Re: [grannyinthesky] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

That sucks.
Sounds like a total disregard for common sense.


popsjumper  (D 999999999)

Feb 9, 2008, 7:10 AM
Post #16 of 32 (3994 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Hans] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

News Report:

http://www.magicvalley.com/...top_story/130437.txt

Unsure


JesSke  (A 50001)

Feb 9, 2008, 10:49 AM
Post #17 of 32 (3918 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

This sucks! My thoughts are with the family and friends. Blue skies forever.
btw-I liked it better when you guys were known for the pregnant ladies... (sorry, just trying to lighten it up a bit). Jill, you let me know if you need anything! I mean anything!


freelyflyn71  (B 29888)

Feb 9, 2008, 11:21 AM
Post #18 of 32 (3898 views)
Shortcut
Re: [cJilljump] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Richard was a damn good friend. My wife told me the news when I got home from work. She was crying...I was just pissed off. Richard called me while I was at the Farm last Sunday. He'd left his phone at the Farm. He asked me to mail it to him in Macon, 'cause he was leaving for Idaho. He got his phone Tuesday. I called and talked to Jill and Richard Tuesday, and told him three different times to be careful in Idaho. Later, he left a message on my cell phone letting me know that he'd arrived in Idaho. He told me that it was really cool of me to send his phone to him, and that he owes me big. Yep, the jackass owes me nine bucks. I really wish that I would have called him back.Frown I never thought that he'd jump alone...how stupid. Now I'll never see my friend again.Mad To all my friends who B.A.S.E. jump...learn from this...this was a needless loss. To Jill...I know you guys had grown very close...I won't pretend to know how you feel, but you know you have myself and Mel's love and support.
Blue Skies to my friend Richard Heaton...love ya, bro...

Big Eric


Bolas  (D License)

Feb 10, 2008, 4:20 PM
Post #19 of 32 (3009 views)
Shortcut
Re: [TomAiello] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Would wrapping himself in the canopy for warmth may have made a difference?

Not saying there weren't many other links in the chain of events that could have caused a different outcome. Unsure


Lucky...  (F 1)

Feb 10, 2008, 4:52 PM
Post #20 of 32 (2972 views)
Shortcut
Re: [TomAiello] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Not ever have been to Perine Bridge, did he rally jump at 11pm? Is it lit?


DJL  (C License)

Feb 10, 2008, 7:47 PM
Post #21 of 32 (2782 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Bolas] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Would wrapping himself in the canopy for warmth may have made a difference?

Not saying there weren't many other links in the chain of events that could have caused a different outcome. Unsure

There's a stage of hypothermia in which you convince yourself that you're overheating and start to throw away clothing. That's why he was tossing his stuff. People usually hit that stage without thinking about finding a way to ride out the weather. A canopy wouldn't offer much protection, just a wind block, you still need insulation from the temperature. 30F isn't that bad but put it together with his cotton clothing and building up a sweat on his hike and you compound the effect of the elements.


cloudseeker2001

Feb 10, 2008, 9:15 PM
Post #22 of 32 (2704 views)
Shortcut
Re: [DJL] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
Would wrapping himself in the canopy for warmth may have made a difference?

Not saying there weren't many other links in the chain of events that could have caused a different outcome. Unsure

There's a stage of hypothermia in which you convince yourself that you're overheating and start to throw away clothing. That's why he was tossing his stuff. People usually hit that stage without thinking about finding a way to ride out the weather. A canopy wouldn't offer much protection, just a wind block, you still need insulation from the temperature. 30F isn't that bad but put it together with his cotton clothing and building up a sweat on his hike and you compound the effect of the elements.

If a person has arrived to the point of taking off their clothes, they are not in control of their facilities and they cannot self-rescue. This is a past the point of return stage.Unsure

Everyone should read: 98.6 The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive by Cody Lundin.......it may very well save you one day!WinkSmile


tdog  (D 28800)

Feb 10, 2008, 9:21 PM
Post #23 of 32 (2700 views)
Shortcut
Re: [Lucky...] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
Not ever have been to Perine Bridge, did he rally jump at 11pm? Is it lit?

The street lights from the road light the landing area quite well, even with no moon.

Very easy night jump - so as long as you make it past the "dark shadow" under the bridge.

Under the bridge is the "rock garden", a series of washing machine sized boulders that would suck if you landed into, from maybe fighting line twists. But, you most likely would live with minor to major injuries.

Getting out at night = three ways.

1) Boat - never seen one when I have jumped at night.

2) River Side Trail - a 20 minute walk thru brush and rocks, slightly rolling, with a few large ditches or things that would seriously hurt without a flashlight. There is one leg-breaking ditch that without a flashlight you would encounter with some pain. For the first 10 minutes you have the bridge lights. The second 10, you are around a corner and have the moon and your flashlight.

Without knowing the way - you would almost DEFINATELY miss your turn a few times on this way out - although you probably would just end up at the golf course instead of the shortcut to the road.

At night I have had a deer jump in front of me, so close I could feel the wind... And I have kicked a porcupine. This trail is far from paved, but not hard. The Outback Steakhouse at the top might make you forget that this canyon still has all of God's natural elements.

3) "Climb out". You climb 450 feet up the side of the cliff. The areas range from a 30 degree incline of large boulders, to a 30 foot tall shear rock face at the top that has a few options to pass... Along the way there is a section that is exposed, meaning if you lost your step, you would have a 100 foot tumbling fall. There is an old rope at this section that you grab, that would be difficult, but passable, without the hand hold.

Most people I jump with consider the "climb out" to be too difficult or inappropriate for their risk tolerance, at night. With a head lamp and experience, it is probably pretty easy, but I always have hiked out at night.

Any way you look at it, looking down from above the ways out look "easy", and I can see how someone would think they could "improv" their way out. However, once actually down there, it is a whole different cup of tea. Not impossible, not even difficult, but not something to do alone at night without prior experience.

Heck, if the jumper would have called me via cell, I could have told him how to get out long distance. Not hard, just need a few facts.


(This post was edited by tdog on Feb 10, 2008, 9:30 PM)


stitch  (C License)

Feb 11, 2008, 1:55 AM
Post #24 of 32 (2560 views)
Shortcut
Re: [tdog] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Keep in mind we had 4 inches of fresh snow that night, on top of the snow we already had.

Finding and staying on the trail at night in the snow with a flashlight would have been difficult for someone that knew the routes out.

Richard didn't have the benefit of any of this.


Lucky...  (F 1)

Feb 11, 2008, 8:20 AM
Post #25 of 32 (2240 views)
Shortcut
Re: [tdog] RICHARD HEATON - MIA [In reply to] Can't Post

Do cell phones work down there? If so, what a shame Unsure


First page Previous page 1 2 Next page Last page  View All

Forums : Skydiving : Incidents

 


Search for (options)